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| Astronomy Essentials | Space on Sep 01, 2015

Dates of lunar and solar eclipses in 2015 and 2016

September 2015 presents two eclipses. A partial solar eclipse takes place on September 13. A total eclipse of a supermoon comes on September 27-28.

The next eclipse is a partial eclipse of the sun on September 13, 2015, visible from the southern part of Africa. One fortnight (two weeks) after that, it’ll be a total eclipse of the year’s closest supermoon on the night of September 27-28, visible from North and South America. Follow the links below to learn more about the upcoming solar and lunar eclipses in 2015 and 2016. Enjoy.

Partial solar eclipse on September 13

Super Blood Moon eclipse on night of September 27-28

Eclipses in 2015

Eclipses in 2016

Fortnight (approximate two-week) separation between solar and lunar eclipses

The video below – showing where the September 13 eclipse will be visible – is courtesy of Larry Koehn at the great website shadowandsubstance.com:

Partial Eclipse of the Sun on September 13, 2015 from LarryKoehn on Vimeo.

Composite total solar eclipse Aug. 1999 by Fred Espenak.

Composite total solar eclipse Aug. 1999 by Fred Espenak.

This is what a total eclipse looks like.  This is the total eclipse of October 27, 2004 via Fred Espenak of NASA, otherwise known as Mr. Eclipse.  Visit Fred's page here.

This is what a total eclipse looks like. This is the total eclipse of October 27, 2004 via Fred Espenak of NASA. Visit Fred’s page here. We astronomy writers often describe a totally eclipsed moon as appearing ‘blood red.’ Here’s why the moon turns red during a total eclipse.

Eclipses in 2015
March 20: Total solar eclipse
April 4: Total lunar eclipse
September 13: Partial solar eclipse
September 28: Total lunar eclipse

Eclipses in 2016
March 9: Total solar eclipse
March 23: Penumbral lunar eclipse
September 1: Annular solar eclipse
September 16: Penumbral lunar eclipse

Fortnight (approximate two-week) separation between solar and lunar eclipses. A solar eclipse always takes place within one fortnight of any lunar eclipse. For instance, in 2015, the total solar eclipse on March 20 comes one fortnight before the Blood Moon total lunar eclipse of April 4. The partial solar eclipse on September 13 occurs one fortnight before the Blood Moon total lunar eclipse of September 28. In 2016, the total solar eclipse of March 9 happens one fortnight before the penumbral lunar eclipse of March 23; and the September 1 annular solar eclipse takes place one fortnight before the September 16 penumbral lunar eclipse.

Somewhat rarely, a solar eclipse can occur one fortnight before and after a lunar eclipse. This will next happen in the year 2018:
July 13: Partial solar eclipse
July 27: Total lunar eclipse
August 11: Partial solar eclipse

Somewhat rarely, a lunar eclipse can come one fortnight before and after a solar eclipse. This will next happen in the year 2020:
June 5: Penumbral lunar eclipse
June 21: Annular solar eclipse
July 5: Penumbral lunar eclipse

Read more about three eclipses in one month

Animation of the September 28, 2015, total lunar eclipse, whereby the moon passes through the southern half of the  Earth's shadow from west to east. The horizontal yellow line depicts the ecliptic - Earth's orbital plane projected onto the dome of sky. The inner bull's-eye shadow depicts the umbra (dark shadow) and the shadow encircling the umbra  represents the penumbra (faint shadow).

Animation of the September 28, 2015, total lunar eclipse. Moon passes through southern half of the Earth’s shadow from west to east. Horizontal yellow line depicts the ecliptic – Earth’s orbital plane projected onto the dome of sky. The inner bull’s-eye shadow depicts the umbra (dark shadow). The penumbra (faint shadow) encircles the umbra.

Bottom line: Dates of solar and lunar eclipses in 2015 and 2016.

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